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About DanTheBassMan

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  • Birthday 09/18/2001


  • About Me:
    Lost soul with a long pole.
  • Interests (Hobbies, favorite activities, etc.):
    1. Fishing
    2. Producing short films on fishing
    3. Thinking about fishing
  • What I do for a living:
    Fish when I can, busy making time for fishing the other couple hours of the day.

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  • Location
    MIA ca. Last Night

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  1. The 72nd waking hour is not a good time to hit the rocks at night unless you desperately need a custom travel rod.
  2. Seabass may blitz on the same baitballs as albies/follow their schools. The most likely cause of the phenomenon you described is that you hooked the albie first, and while fighting the albie, the sea bass went for the trailing fly. While dogging at the end of the line, the albie would not be moving too fast for a sea bass to catch up and take the bottom fly. Albies are built for speed... sea bass, not so much. Albies have clocked in a swimming speeds in excess of 40 mph... if the albie had put the pedal to the metal, there'd probably just be a pair of lips left on the bottom fly.
  3. Albie Snax are borderline cheating. They catch numbers like no other lure I know of, and they also get the attention of large fish, too. I've taken many, many 28"-38" fish on them in conditions of all manner and have had Snax mouthed by fish that were no less than 55" about 20' away in 4 feet of water. They are fantastic day and night, weightless or weighted with a keeled hook or jighead, slow-twitched or straight reeled or even deadsticked. They're versatile, durable, downright effective, and they cast like cruise missiles compared to just about any other soft plastic on the market. About as good as lures get for sight-fishing, too, save soft plastic crustacean imitations in certain situations. My favorite place to fish them, though, is in the whitewater, just where you found them to be deadly. Great in blitzes for the ease in unhooking fish, especially if you fish them barbless. No need to switch lures when hopping from stripers to sea bass to albies this time of year. White is my favorite all-round color, although the old clear amber, both old and new pinks, and the new Michael Jackson color can be more effective for whatever set of reasons in a given situation.
  4. Nate, I typically use a 1-3 matchsticks' thickness worth, depending on the size of the gurgler, of the coarsest, most buoyant bucktail from the base of the tail. I tie this in in the style of a flatwing platform---splayed out horizontally. Then, I'll tie in a fair amount of marabou on top to about the same length as the bucktail, ~2-3". The platform almost entirely eliminates the issue of fouling, while the marabou gives the fly bulk and flow at rest and breathing quality when stripped/popped. Super easy, quick, rather durable, and as easy to cast as it gets. I can bang out up to 15 an hour and each will last at least a few dozen fish with the extra thick upholstery foam bodies I use. I'll play around with zonker strips and extra long marble fox at the vice tonight. My gut tells me movement will be fantastic, but the zonker strips will probably outlast the foam head by a great margin (which can be replaced, if the fly has enough mojo to deserve it), while the fox hair might foul more often than the marabou, even with a platform. Zonkers for large ones and fox for small gurglers sounds like a good bet, but I won't know until I try. Dan
  5. Hey Chris, Hope Sunday treated you guys well! And I hope Geoff got that jacket back to you... I have absolutely no idea how he tracked us down, first go. Probably same way he sniffs out the only two keepers on two consecutive casts. I left you a proprietary blank as we were leaving as I was having some trouble accurately measuring IP/AA. Thought maybe you'd have better luck. I thought you'd like the feel of it, too. Right up your alley. Back to TH rods. About insert guide weight: I measured the weight of the full Mark II guide train that Mike prepped for me. Full Ti frames/Torzite inserts. The entire weight of 10 guides plus the tip is 6.82 g. Just the tip and 3 or 4 running guides (I didn't note exactly how many there were on the tip section) weigh 1.34-1.58g. I have not measured the REC guides you use, but I'd be surprised if the weight difference were more than 20%. At that point it is, as Mike puts it, the square root of nothing. The thread and finish in the epoxy must weigh more than the running guides, further negating weight differences. The tip section of the Mark II blank alone weighs 14g on my scale. Then throw in the fly line, acting especially on the tip of the rod, which typically ranges 500-800gr (32.4-51.8 g), along with the fly, saturated with salt water, and even the salt water on the surface of the fly line! I don't know how much additional inertia and drag those ceramic inserts impart on the blank, but again---square root of zip. Yep, the Pandion feels great to cast. Zero effort is a good way to put it. However, it's not that much slower to cast than your Pac Bay. I have reviewed some footage and found that Mike roll pickup-backcast-shoot style of casting takes me 5 seconds to perform. To place an anchor and make a Spey cast with the same line, around 2.5 seconds. I'm measuring from the start of the first stroke until the fly is delivered to the target. There is no way you're making the routine roll cast pickup to backcast to shoot in under 2.5 seconds, and it's probably not much faster than 5 seconds. I would hazard a guess of around 4 seconds. That's just the way it is---the time the rod takes to load and unload is very short compared to the time it takes the line to unroll before the next stroke can begin. Out front in big wind, I would definitely prefer Mike's rod. Ergo, I'm building one this winter. However, the Pandion retains castability in stronger winds than I'd previously thought. I wasn't casting directly into the wind (30-45° off dead-on into it) and I wasn't casting very far (~60-75') in the 15-20 mph winds we encountered out front the first weekend, but it was easier than using my single hander and surprisingly capable of delivering the fly and snapping the line tight to the reel consistently. Looking over to my right to see what Mike was doing, I was surprised he wasn't significantly out-casting (he easily could have) me or appear to have a much easier time setting the anchor for his roll casts or delivery stroke. I would have preferred his rod by a mile for the command it had over the line, but in that case, I held my own just fine with the Pandion. The rest of the weekend went similarly well with 10-25 mph winds from every angle. In short: if I had only one of Mike's rods, I would have been able to fish more effectively, easily, and probably had no less fun while doing it. However, I was not entirely out of the game with the Pandion. Have to play devil's advocate sometimes. It is a well-backed argument, though: The Pandion strikes me as a very efficient rod given its price and weight. It's rather heavy and fairly cheap, but because of the way it bends with my 650gr floater, I can use a wide casting arc and still achieve very narrow pointed loops. In fishing scenarios, it is still not so terribly bogged down that its recovery rate from a loaded state with a fairly narrow casting arc can still get the line moving properly quickly, and the crisper stop with minimal bounce upon delivery creates the most efficient wedge-shaped loops with ease. Because it is not very powerful, a stiff headwind will create enough drag on the blank, line, and fly that recovery speed is decreased enough to make casting rather inefficient. If we greatly increase the power of the rod, we do a few things. The rod will bend less when the wind creates drag on the rod, guides, and line. This is good as recovery rate improves in a significant head wind. However, the rod will also load less against the inertia of the line with the same weight. This is a problem as it means we will not be able to take full advantage of a fully loaded blank to accelerate the line as it rapidly unloads---this is what makes a rod like the Pandion so terribly efficient with 650gr. We must exert more effort to load the rod more and get the line moving faster. This also creates the problem that 99.9% of fly casters cannot achieve narrow loops with a wide cast arc (which takes full advantage of rod load to increase line speed; also the most efficient & smoothest way to load a rod & increase line speed) with a rod that does not bend that much; a rod with low line weight:IP ratio. As a result, the caster must use a narrower, less efficient stroke to achieve the narrow loops that make efficient casting possible with a rod that doesn't do too much to accelerate the line on its own. You could argue that the more powerful of two blanks built with the same weight and material, when deflected the same number of degrees, will unload faster, but this tends to be negated by the weight of rod components, lines, and increased weight as power in the blank increases (the power:blank weight ratio can only increase so much with the same material). There are two possible solutions, then: The first is to have a superhumanly fast casting stroke that loads a fairly powerful rod to an incredible degree with a relatively light line, say, having a line weight:IP ratio of 0.5-1. This would increase line speed as a result of increased stroke speed, increase load which, coupled with increased unloading rate with the relatively light line, get the line truly screaming out. The increase of bend in the rod with such an impossible fast stroke could also allow the caster to make the most of a very, very wide casting arc and retain straight line path to create very tight, pointed loops. The other solution is to build an incredibly powerful, yet light, rod and match it with an even more incredibly heavy line. I'm talking in the realm of a rod that doesn't weigh much more than our current rods but with a measured IP over 2000g and a line in the 4000gr range. This would fully load the rod to make the most use of the rod unloading to increase line speed. If the rod additionally had a power:weight ratio many times that of our current rods, it would unloaded very quickly. A rod this powerful wouldn't be affected that much by the 20-30 mph winds we contest with, so whether we line it to have a line weight:IP ratio of 1:1 or 2:1, the wind wouldn't cause it to fold over, much less significantly decrease the unloading/recovery rate. Not to mention that, as Esa says, heavier lines are much, much more efficient to cast, both in wind and in calm conditions. There are, of course, problems in both of these cases. Neither your nor I nor anybody alive can load a rather powerful rod with an line weight:IP ratio 0.5-1 the way it can be loaded with a ratio closer to 2:1. Maybe Bruce Lee could have done it. In the other example, we do not have the technology to build such a powerful yet light rod that would not load significantly load under its own weight. If we did, it would have already been done. Also, what mere mortal is going to fish with a 4000gr line? Much less, what kind of line would that have to be? Anchor chain? These are extreme examples, but they make the point that the problem can be theoretically solved by decreasing the rod power:line weight ratio or increasing line weight. Due to these real limitations, we cannot solely improve performance by making powerful rods or heavy lines. There must be a compromise. The best compromise I have felt thus far are Mike's rods. They are powerful enough that their unloading rate is not too seriously affected by strong headwinds, but not so powerful that they do not load to a fair degree when casting fairly heavy lines (500-750gr). However, they do no load so deeply that narrow loops are easily achievable with wide casting arcs, and nor do they feel to load so fully that the unloading of the rod accelerates the line the way the Pandion does, meaning that more effort and speed is applied on the part of the caster to create the same line speeds. When I build Mike's blank, I will test it with a range of line, from as light to as heavy as I have. I will test it in calm conditions and on the windiest days I can find. I have a feeling I will prefer it with a slightly higher line weight:IP ratio than Mike does, but its performance would be better to suit my stroke than the way Mike lines his rods to match his stroke. The solution I think, still, is to create a more powerful rod and use and even heavier line to load that very powerful rod deeply, but how much that kind of rod would weigh is the deciding factor. Whether I would be able to fish that kind of rod all day is also in the air. Therefore, I truly believe Mike has struck a great balance in rod and line for his purposes, but not the best that is theoretically possible. When I say theoretically, it is based on my observations from my experience in having used rods that cast well in headwinds and manage the line easily or rods that easily generate high line speeds and efficient loops. All the properties that give rods these abilities are currently found in no rod that I know of or can currently be created, and no human I know of would be able to take advantage of these properties. My $0.02 in trying to make the most all-round performance by combining everything I've heard from Mike and Esa. Take it with a grain of salt. You should be able to find some in your waders. Note: I intentionally ignored rod and line taper length in this argument, as these factors greatly influence performance both in calm and rough conditions in their own right, and I do not believe I have any near enough experience or understanding about how variation in these factors affects performance. I would believe, in brief, that increasing rod length affects performance for a number of reasons until blank weight negates their affects and the rod becomes uncastable by most fly fisherman, and that a longer line taper prevents dumping in both calm and wind but becomes more difficult to carry, straighten, and shoot. And then there's line taper, which I also do not have enough experience with to speak about. Hi Mike, I had an amazing time. It blew any expectations I had out of the water, even for general the lack fish. I'm still working on transcribing everything you taught me on paper, and I'll have a few more questions I've come up with after you're home, if you wouldn't mind. I wish we could still be on the Cape---the atmosphere of the group and trip in general had me feeling more free than I've ever felt before. Give our best to Geoff, and like Gavin said, tell him we would be looking forward to meeting up with him any time he comes back across the pond. Same to Dougie if he's still with you. Looking forward to continue the Brit & American team next year in the spring. Best of luck with the rest of your trip! Regards, Dan P.S. I still have the video clip of your impromptu jetty descent, but I'll wait to publish it until you start a thread of a write-up of your trip, if you're planning to do that. It doesn't seem fair to do so here. Even in your most sleep-deprived states, you are a true prophet. But please, get some sleep, and not with a cup of tea in your hand this time. AKA IP of Gavin's breakfast? Again?!
  6. Peter, Back in April, I was in awe of both the shots you've shared with us and the lengths to which I can only imagine you've gone to deliver us a film of this caliber. It was truly inspirational to me, both as a (fly) angler and aspiring short film producer. Thanks to SIFF18, I explored new places and ways to heighten the experience, namely in the game of sight-fishing. As a result, I've gained insight I'd otherwise have remained oblivious to and witnessed spectacular sights and events that I couldn't have ever imagined unfolding in front of me. Plus, I've captured the footage to relive the moment, which I hope to refine and share when the right time comes. I needed that boost of inspiration---thank you for making it public again. I now have an even deeper appreciation of your work, now that I've gained some understanding of your experiences through my own. Sincerely, Dan
  7. I've seen more tog up here than I thought possible. Found a spot this year where I can sightfish cunner to record size (trying to get one submitted at the moment) and tautog to 8-10 pounds in 2-6 feet of water during the spring and summer. If I get tired of that, I can push up a hundred feet and fish a flat that can, at times, be plastered with stripers from schoolie to cow size. It's really cool to watch giant cunner and tog behavior, though, in that kind of shallow water. You have to have a watchful eye, as sometimes they will sit under large pieces of kelp, just their mouths or fins sticking out. Other days they'll move around the area in groups or guard what look like nests in pairs. I've seen a lot of peanuts lately with last year's micros, having grown a little chunkier, on them. Should be a fun fall on fly even if the larger fish don't move through near shore, although with the current bait abundance, I have a hard time imagining that not occurring.
  8. My best to date actually occurred just yesterday evening, actually. My friend invited me for an offshore trip for tunoids, although I had my own agenda of taking on a large shark on light spinning tackle (what most would consider light for largemouth) or on fly. We arrived to our grounds well before dawn and had our first encounters mid-morning. A decent shark went for the balloon closest to the boat and I made a few fly presentations to him before another rod went of. The shark I'd been casting to then went off and took another one of the baits. The double hookup was fun and both put up great fights for their size. After a few hours of good groundfish action, another two sharks came in quick succession, but neither took the bait on the light spinning setup. Then came long period without any action from the pelagics, although good company and action on truly ultralight tackle (specially designed, maybe half a pencil in diameter at the butt but they can take a lot of drag) kept up the fun. After the third slack tide, my friend gave the OK to dump almost 10 gallons of sun-baked bunker awfulness that probably shouldn't have been disturbed. We gave it our all as it was soon time to pack it in. Surprisingly, not a single shark came through the slick. However, as we were hauling up the anchor after stowing all the rods, we spotted a shark cruising on the surface and picking off the floating bunker, one by one. I grabbed a live mack and pitched it to him on one of the light rods. He turned towards it but doubled back and kicked off. We stalked him for another 50 yards and I made a second cast, landing almost on his head. He turned, munched, and I tightened down with everything my reel would give. The rod bent up to 90 degrees before the first guide as the drag was locked. He made a few runs and dogged hard, but I gave him no quarter and had all 8 feet him boatside in about 10 minutes, even after loosening the drag in case of another run. He'd spit up a few bunker and had some fresh battle scars, but was still a beautiful animal to be able to see and handle up close. Probably had more than a few pounds on me. A few quick photos and he was on his way to finish off the rest of those bunker. I've been hoping to get the opportunity to truly put one of these rods through its paces for a few years now, and I think it was a worthy test of tackle that looks more fitting to be used in the neighborhood pond. I'm still hoping for a shot this year at an especially angry 10+ footer on the same rod or on fly, which I think would just be awesome.
  9. Had as good a run of peanuts as I've ever seen (granted, I haven't been in the game more than a few years) last fall on the North Shore of MA in my area that brought hickory shad and schoolie blitzes to the beaches every day through October. 50-100 micros each morning/evening was the norm, but I never saw anything that even looked like it broke 20". It's been disappointing in that regard.
  10. @ginclear, Looking forward to meeting you at Pavillion. Glad to hear that you've found a good match for your Beulah. I've tried an older Beulah Surf 8/9---not the Opal. It didn't seem to have the guts to fling a truly large fly but it may have been for want of a different line. I'll bring my Pandion for some variety. 630gr @ 38' will send a 12" Beast over to PI as long as the winds aren't up. Dan
  11. Better. Video posted on the page "Greasy Beaks Flyfishing" on Facebook. It's short and doesn't give much for scale, but shape is well defined and size estimated around 9'.
  12. A friend of mine had a decent sized GW cruising under his boat in a few feet of water on the flats north of Cape Ann today. Not a far swim to Maine for a white shark.
  13. I got hit pretty good kayaking out of Ipswich this morning, and even better back on shore. I didn't take any chemical precautions and my shorts didn't help either. Not my typical stomping grounds so I can't gauge how bad it is, but it was fairly annoying when the wind wasn't more so. Dan
  14. I used to fish a 6-8' length of #20 mono but was taught some lessons by larger stripers. After blowing first albie hookup by breaking perfection loop in a #20 mono butt section, even though my tippet was only #10, I vowed never to use a less than 30lb butt section for the regular NE species because the perfection loop, which I used for the leader-line loop-to-loop connection, can be as little as a 50% strength knot, while the surgeon's knot I use to attach the tippet to the butt section and non-slip loop knot or clinch knot I use to attach the fly to the tippet are intrinsically much stronger. For tippet, I'll drop down to #10-15 fluoro for stripers on flats or albies on calm days. #20 mono for general use for stripers, where I fish from the rocks for the most part. Targeting big fish using big flies and my two-hander, I'll use tippet as large as #30 mono, but this is risky with sinking heads, and I've already broken off a Skagit head/sink tip at the running line this year. Leader length depends on a few factors, namely the situation I'm fishing in and the sink rate (or lack thereof) of my line and where I'd like to present the fly in the water column. The longer the leader, the more it lessens/slows down the effect of the line on the fly. With a floating line, a longer leader allows sinking flies to sink at a little faster and a little deeper, and stripping raises the fly less. The effect is reversed with a sinking line, where a shorter leaders allows the sinking line to sink the fly faster, deeper, and results in a more direct connection to the fly. My general purpose leader with a floating line is around 8-10', with a 2-4' butt suction of #30-60 and a 6-8' tippet of #15-30. On flats, my leaders will be from 10-15' with tippets up to 12' long, as I may frequently change flies and it shortens my tippet fairly quickly. With a sinking line, I'll rarely throw a leader longer than 8', maybe 10' or so on the flats, as any longer and it dampens the sinking line's effect. I still keep the tippet as long as possible, though, with butt sections as short as 1'. I don't believe longer or heavier butt sections have any meaningful positive impact on turnover and I don't believe the contrapositive to be true either, as I think the only purpose of the butt section is to provide extra strength for the weaker line-leader connection. As I retie the tippet/butt knot less frequently than fly/tippet, I can make the butt as short as I want and I'll still trash the butt section due to wear/kinking long before I cut it too short to be reasonably usable. My $0.02. Dan
  15. @FlyTyr203, Welcome to SOL! To answer your question: I think your best move is to check online auction sites and the BST (once you make enough posts) for a new head/line, which can be had for as little as $20. I also have the 13'9" 9wt Pandion, and I also have gone through the process of dialing in the line for various casts, weather conditions, and types of places I fish. I went into a detailed rundown of my setups towards the bottom of the first page: In short: Running Line: Airfo Miracle Braid Head: 23' 420gr Airflo Skagit Compact (unfortunately, discontinued) Sinking tip: Rio T-14, 15' (210 grains, head+tip is 630gr @ 38') Floating tip: Rio 15' Floating Tip 11wt (168 grains, head+tip is 588gr @ 38'. This tip is discontinued, but the 150gr 10wt tip is still available and should work just as well.) I typically use the Skagit/T-14 combo for dredging the rocks with huge Beast fleyes. This is my preferred combo for OH casting, especially when using big flies and casting in(to) the wind, and Skagit casting when I have no backcast room on the rocks. In calm conditions, 120' casts aren't uncommon with the larger flies. I would say 10mph of wind is my limit before I feel the rod is giving in and the rod can't be pushed anymore, and my casting distances drops drastically. The floating tip is fantastic for Spey-style casts in shallower locations using smaller/lighter flies, as it turns the entire head/tip into something like a Scandi taper. OH casting is fine as well in calmer conditions, but it shines with Spey in my experience. This might not be something that interests you at the moment in the salt, but it's a very useful tool to have in the quiver. Just the other day, I went down to the Cape to fish a mark I fished with Mike in the spring. There's a sand dune right at our backs, about 8-10' high and 30' behind if we waded up to our stripping baskets, which made OH casting with both single and two-handed rods a PITA and limiting to around 75'. That day is was calm and I was probably nipping at 100' without having to worry about angling my backcast or hitting anything behind me. Yesterday, we had 10mph winds from around 10 o'clock. OH casting directly into it was a struggle with the floater, but more likely down to my poor technique. Spey wasn't easy either, but I developed a combination of casts that helped me execute the drift I wanted to. After finished the swing downstream at 3:00, I made a snake roll to straighten my head to 10:30. Then, I made something like a Snap-T/Perry Poke hybrid (poke even sooner than with a Speed Poke) inline with my cast, which produced tighter and more stable loops that straightened around 80'. I couldn't do that casting OH. 750 grains is indeed too much for this rod, especially involving any kind of wind. 630gr is near the upper end of the recommended OH weight range, and works well for general purposes, though not in stronger winds. It also works well with the anchored casts, being at the lower end of the recommended weight spectrum. The floating tip is more delicate but allows for more technical casting, handling wind fairly well too. If I fished stronger headwinds and big out-front conditions more frequently, I would opt for a line around 500-550 grains. I learned this after fishing with Mike, having handled one of his lighter two-handers, as it was much more powerful than the Pandion but lined much lighter. I've learned that the Pandion is not an OH rod that can Spey cast but a Spey rod that can OH cast---a versatile two-hander appropriate for the salt when used for what it was designed for. If you're serious into out-front fly fishing and need an appropriate TH to handle most any conditions you dare to venture into, there are a number of threads covering such topics, such as this latest one. Additionally, here is the thread I started last fall when I was first figuring out how to line the Pandion, which stretched 5 pages of golden advice from many experienced members including Mike and Esa: Best of luck in your endeavor, and I think you picked the best forum you could to ask this question! Dan Edit: Agreed with SSPey below---the 440gr SA Skagit Third Coast on sale at Sierra should be on the money with your 150gr tip. I searched long and hard to find a replacement Airflo when I broke mine off, but it's probably just psychological.